4735. 'Do not shed blood' means not to do violence to what is holy. This is clear from the meaning of 'blood' as that which is holy, dealt with below, and therefore 'shedding blood' means doing violence to it. Everything holy in heaven proceeds from the Lord's Divine Human, as consequently does everything holy in the Church. For this reason to prevent people from doing violence to that which is holy the Lord instituted the Holy Supper, in which it is explicitly declared that the bread there is His flesh and the wine His blood, thus that His Divine Human is the source of that which is holy in the Holy Supper. Among the Ancients 'flesh and blood' meant the human proprium, for that which is human consists of flesh and blood. This explains what the Lord said to Simon,
Blessed are you, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. Matthew 16:17.
Therefore the flesh and blood meant in the Holy Supper by the bread and wine are the Lord's Human Proprium. The Lord's actual Proprium which He acquired to Himself by His own power is Divine. His Proprium was since His conception that which He had from Jehovah His Father and was Jehovah Himself, and therefore the Proprium which He acquired to Himself within the Human was Divine. It is this Divine Proprium within the Human that is called flesh and blood, 'flesh' being His Divine Good, 3813, 'blood' Divine Truth that goes with Divine Good.
 The Lord's Human, now that it has been glorified or made Divine, cannot be thought of as something merely human but as Divine Love within a human form. This is more true of Him than it is of angels, who - when they come to be seen, as I myself have seen them - are seen as forms of love and charity taking on a human appearance, the Lord enabling this to be so. For it was by Divine Love that the Lord made His Human Divine, even, as has been stated, as heavenly love serves to make someone an angel after death, so that he too is seen as a form of love and charity taking on a human appearance. From this it is evident that in the celestial sense the Lord's Divine Human means Divine Love itself, which is a love directed towards the whole human race whom He wishes to save, making them blessed and happy for ever, and to whom He wishes to impart, insofar as its members can accept it, what is His and is Divine, so that it becomes their own. This love, and man's reciprocated love to the Lord as well as his love towards the neighbour, are meant and represented in the Holy Supper, Divine celestial love by the flesh or bread in it and Divine spiritual love by the blood or wine.
 From all this one may now see what is meant by eating the Lord's flesh and drinking His blood in John,
I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread he will live for ever. But the bread which I shall give is My flesh. Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drank His blood you will have no life in you. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. For My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. This is the bread which came down from heaven. John 6:50-58.
Because 'flesh' and 'blood' mean the Divine Celestial and the Divine Spiritual that proceed from the Lord's Divine Human, as has been stated, or what amounts to the same, mean Divine Good and Divine Truth that proceed from His Love, 'eating' and 'drinking' mean making these things one's own. They become one's own through the life of love and charity which is also the life of faith. For 'eating' means making good one's own, and 'drinking' making truth one's own, see 2187, 3069, 3168, 3513, 3596, 3734, 3832, 4017, 4018.
Arcana Coelestia 4017-4018; John 6:51-58)
 Because 'blood' in the celestial sense means the Divine Spiritual or Divine Truth proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human, it therefore means that which is holy, for Divine Truth proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human is Holiness itself. There is no other Holiness, nor any other source of it.
 As regards 'blood' meaning that Holiness, this may be seen from many places in the Word, of which let the following be quoted here: In Ezekiel,
Son of man, thus said the Lord Jehovih, Say to every bird of the air, to every wild animal of the field, Assemble and come, gather yourselves from all around to My sacrifice which I am sacrificing for you, a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel, so that you may eat flesh and drink wine. You will eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth - rams, lambs, and he-goats, all of them fatlings of Bashan. And you will eat fat till you are glutted and drink blood till you are drunk, from My sacrifice which I will sacrifice for you. You will be glutted at My table with horse and chariot, with the mighty, and with every man of war. Thus will I set My glory among the nations. Ezekiel 39:17-21.
This refers to the calling together of all people to the Lord's kingdom, and specifically to the establishment of the Church among gentiles. 'Eating flesh and drinking wine' means making Divine Good and Divine Truth one's own, and so making one's own the Holiness which proceeds from the Lord's Divine Human. Is there anyone who cannot see that here in the references to their eating the flesh of the mighty and drinking the blood of the princes of the earth, and their being glutted with horse, chariot, the mighty, and every man of war, 'flesh' is not used to mean flesh nor 'blood' to mean blood?
 Similarly in John,
I saw an angel standing in the sun, who called out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds flying in mid-heaven, Come, gather yourselves together to the supper of the Great God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses and those seated on them, and the flesh of all, free men and slaves, small and great. Revelation 19:17-18.
Can anyone ever understand these things unless he knows what 'flesh' means in the internal sense, or what 'kings', 'captains', 'mighty men', 'horses', 'those seated on them', 'free men and slaves' mean?
 Also in Zechariah,
He will speak peace to the nations; His dominion will be from sea to sea, and from the River even to the ends of the earth As for you also, through the blood of your covenant I will let out your bound ones from the pit. Zechariah 9:10-11.
This refers to the Lord. 'The blood of the covenant' is Divine Truth proceeding from His Divine Human and is the Holiness itself which has gone out from Him since He was glorified. This Holiness is that which is also called the Holy Spirit, as is evident in John,
Jesus said, If anyone thirsts let him come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, Out of his belly will flow rivers of living water. This He said about the spirit which those believing in Him were to receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet because Jesus was not yet glorified. John 7:37-39.
As regards the holiness proceeding from the Lord being 'the spirit', see John 6:63.
 Further to 'blood' meaning the holiness proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human - in David,
From deceit and from violence He will redeem 1
their soul, and precious will their blood be in His eyes. Psalms 72:14.
'Precious blood' stands for the holiness which they are to receive. In John,
These are they who are coming out of the great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and have made their robes white in the blood of the Lamb. Revelation 7:14.
And in the same author,
They have conquered the dragon by the blood of the Lamb and by the Word of their testimony; and they did not love their soul even to death. Revelation 12:11.
 The Church at the present day knows no more than this, that 'the blood of the Lamb' here means the Lord's passion, for it believes that people are saved solely through the Lord's passion and that it was to endure this that He was sent into the world, a belief which may be enough for the simple who are incapable of grasping interior arcana. The Lord's passion was the last stage of His temptation, by which He fully glorified His Humanity, Luke 24:26; John 12:23, 27-28; 13:31-32; 17:1, 4-5. But 'the blood of the Lamb' here in Revelation is the same as the Divine Truth or that which is holy proceeding from His Divine Human, and so is the same as 'the blood of the covenant' referred to just above, and also in Moses,
 Moses took the book of the covenant, and read it in the ears of the people, who said, All that Jehovah has spoken we will do and hear. Then Moses took the blood and sprinkled it over the people. and said, Behold the blood of the covenant which Jehovah has made with you, upon all these words. Exodus 24:7-8.
'The book of the covenant' was Divine Truth as it existed with them at that time, which Truth was corroborated by means of the blood that bore witness to the fact that such Truth proceeded from His Divine Human.
 In the ritual requirements of the Jewish Church 'blood' meant nothing other than the holiness proceeding from the Lord's Divine Human. When people were being consecrated blood was therefore used to effect this, as when Aaron was consecrated along with his sons. At that time the blood was sprinkled over the horns of the altar, the residue being poured out at the base of it. Some was also put on the tip of their right ear, on their right thumb and the big toe of their right foot, and on their vestments, Exodus 29:12, 16, 20-21; Leviticus 8:15, 19, 23, 30. And when Aaron went within the veil to the mercy-seat the blood had also to be sprinkled with his finger seven times over the east side of the mercy-seat, Leviticus 16:12-15. Likewise in all other consecrations, as well as expiations and cleansings, mentioned in Exodus 12:7, 13, 22; 30:10; Leviticus 1:5, 11, 15; 3:2 , 8, 13; 4:6-7, 17-18, 25, 30, 34; 5:9; 6:27-28; 14:14-19, 25-30; 16:12-15, 18-19; Deuteronomy 12:27.
Exodus 12:22-23, 29:20; Leviticus 3:8, 3:13, 14:25-29, 16:14-15)
 As 'blood' in the genuine sense means that which is holy, so in the contrary sense 'blood' and 'bloods' mean things which bring violence to it. This is because 'shedding innocent blood' means doing violence to that which is holy. For the same reason too infamous deeds in life and profane acts of worship are called 'blood'. The fact that such things are meant by 'blood' and 'bloods' is clear from the following places: In Isaiah,
When the Lord will have washed the excrement of the daughters of Zion and washed away the blood of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgement and by a spirit of purging. Isaiah 4:4.
In the same prophet,
The waters of Dimon are full of blood. Isaiah 15:9.
In the same prophet,
Your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity. Their feet run to evil, and they hasten to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity. Isaiah 59:3, 7.
Yes, in your skirts the blood of poor innocent souls is found. Jeremiah 2:34.
 In the same prophet,
For the sins of the prophets, the iniquities of the priests who shed in the midst of Jerusalem the blood of the righteous. They went astray blind in the streets, they are defiled with blood. Things which have no power they touch with their garments. Lamentations 4:13-14.
I passed by you and saw you weltering in your blood, 2
and I said to you, Live in your blood; 2
I indeed said to you, Live in your blood'. I washed you with water and washed away your blood 2
from upon you, and anointed you with oil. Ezekiel 16:6, 9.
In the same prophet,
You, son of man, will you dispute with the city of blood? 2
Declare to her all her abominations. By your blood which you have shed you have become guilty, and by the idols which you have made you are defiled. Behold, the princes of Israel, each according to his power, 3
have been among you and have shed blood. Men of intrigue have been among you, [ready] to shed blood, and among you have eaten on the mountains. Ezekiel 22:2-4, 6, 9.
If anyone sacrifices anywhere else than on the altar at the tent of meeting it shall be [regarded as] blood, and as though he had shed blood. Leviticus 17:1-9.
 Truth that has been falsified and rendered profane is meant in the following references to 'blood': In Joel,
I will give portents in the heavens and on earth, blood and fire, and columns of smoke. The sun will be turned into thick darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of Jehovah comes. Joel 2:30-31.
The sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the full moon became like blood. Revelation 6:12.
In the same author,
The second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea, and a third part of the sea became blood. Revelation 8:8.
In the same author,
The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became like the blood of one dead, from which every living soul died in the sea. The third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and into the fountains of water, and blood was made. Revelation 16:3-4.
 A similar meaning occurs in the turning of the rivers, pools and ponds in Egypt into blood, Exodus 7:15-22, for 'Egypt' means knowledge which enters of its own accord into heavenly arcana and as a consequence perverts Divine truths, refuses to accept them, and renders them profane, 1164, 1165, 1186. Being Divine ones, all the miracles performed in Egypt embodied the same kind of meanings. 'The rivers' which were turned into blood means the truths that go with intelligence and wisdom, 108, 109, 3051, as likewise do 'waters', 680, 2702, 3058, and 'springs', 2702, 3096, 3424. 'Seas' means factual truths taken as a single whole, 28. 'The moon', which, it is also said, is to be turned into blood, means Divine Truth, 1529-1531, 2495, 4060. From this it is evident that the turning of the moon, sea, springs, waters, and rivers into blood means Truth that has been falsified and rendered profane.
1. The Latin means bring back (imperative singular), but the Hebrew means He will redeem.
2. literally, bloods
3. literally, arm
Arcana Coelestia 108-109, 1164-1165; Ezekiel 39:17-22; Genesis 37:22; Isaiah 15:6)